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From the 6th to the 11th of November 2023, our colleague, MA in Hotel Management, Daliborka Mićanović, Specialist for Teaching Process Logistics for Hotel, Gastronomy and Restaurant Management Study Programs, had the opportunity to go on an Erasmus+ staff mobility for training in Vilnius, Lithuania as a representitive of College of Professional Studies ICEPS. 

The host of the program was Verslo ir svetingumo profesinės karjeros centras (VESK) training center, which offers professional courses in various fields: restaurant, hotel and tourism management, social and health care, business, trade and administration, IT. 

Upon her return from Lithuania, Daliborka shared her impressions: 

“While attending the training at VESK, I had the opportunity to talk with professors and mentors of this center, to get to know their work system and attend trainings conducted by their employees. During my stay in Lithuania, VESK organized a competition in the field of hospitality in cooperation with AEHT organization that ICEPS is a member of.”

AEHT – European Association of Hotel and Tourism Schools is a consultative body of the Council of Europe that aims to improve education in the tourism and hospitality sector while creating stronger relations between member schools across Europe, that nowadays are over 400 in the field of tourism and hospitality from as many as 40 different countries!

During the competition, Daliborka had the opportunity to participate in the organization of the event itself, discuss with lecturers and judges at the competition who are professionals from the field of hospitality on criteria for evaluating students and the logistics in preparing the conditions for the competition. In addition to the competition, sessions were also organized where academic and professional programs were presented, as well as news in the profession and the latest developments.

As many as 25 countries with close to 800 participants took part in the competition, which was an excellent opportunity for networking, meeting colleagues from various hospitality schools from Europe and beyond, such as the Caribbean Islands and Pakistan. Cultural diversity, a wide range of different experiences, as well as thoughts on hospitality made this event particularly significant and special.

Participants competed in as many as 11 categories: barista competition, Decathlon category competition, strategic thinking, front desk, tourist destination, food carving, cocktail master competition and others, and numerous webinars were organized in preparation for the competition. It was particularly interesting that most of the competitions were in groups and consisted of teams of 2-4 participants from different countries, which largely shows how much the goal of this type of event was to bring together and communicate with young people from different parts of Europe.

A very educational part of the conference was the Master Class held this year in the culinary field by Markus Hallgren, the European representative of The WorldChefs Young Chefs Development Committee, as well as the famous Robert Bosma, the author of many books in the field of marketing communication, from which the Model of Attention had a great expansion in the world of hospitality.

“Besides the competitive part, I got the opportunity to meet colleagues from other schools, with whom I mostly exchanged experiences on the way of teaching and the organization of professional practice. Erasmus+ mobility was a unique experience for me that I would recommend to everyone! In addition to all of the above, it enabled me to get to know a new country and a new culture and its customs. Vilnius was certainly a good representative for many guests from the hospitality industry, and we tried the most famous Lithuanian dishes such as traditional Lithuanian potato dumplings, stuffed lamb shank in mead and the famous dessert šakotis.

Neither the cold nor rainy days of the capital of Lithuania could spoil the general impression that this mobility was a great opportunity for me to test myself at organizing events and make my contribution, but also to learn many useful things that I will continue to use in my every-day work organizing lectures for fohospitality students at ICEPS, as well as the possibility of developing local and national competitions of a similar type in our country”, emphasized Daliborka Mićanović.

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